Week 1/2 - Getting Aquainted
This week’s task was to use the Amazon Echo Dot and familiarize ourselves with its potential and functions.
As someone who is already a user of Amazon Alexa it was interesting to view from another perspective how new users interact with one, and what kinds of issues the Echo Dot faces trying to handle some of the tasks. The Echo works well handling simple things like telling the weather, playing music, telling time, or creating reminders and schedules. When interacting with the Echo it was apparent that users weren’t really sure how else to approach it besides basic tasks like that. Eventually users would use the mobile app to download new skills, and see what else the Echo was capable of.
The Echo handles several language changes really well, but as a result of changing the language many skills no longer function. The Echo appears to successful handle Australian English, Canadian French, Japanese, and German really well. I had never tried these features before, so it was really new and impressive to me that multiple languages seemed almost seamless. The Echo faced difficulties with some skills, and users became frustrated when they couldn’t give a voice command while a new skill was being explained (like a game, or long information.) It appears as though when skills are programmed/created the Echo follows the specific script written out, and so at times it can be hard to get through a skill or game that has not included skip functions, or fast forwards, or even game saves. This aspect of the Echo could probably be improved.